The sixth generation of the Corvette, the 2008 C6, offers customers a choice of coupe or convertible left-hand drive models delivering legendary American supercar performance with great style and quality – plus even better value, with ‘more for less’ pricing starting at £45,995, a reduction of £1,600 from last year, despite the significant engine upgrade.

The Corvette C6 features innovative technologies to combine high performance thrills with a luxuriously-appointed interior. The incredible performance of the 6.2 litre V8 power plant is discreetly managed by advanced Active Handling (ESP) and Traction Control systems. Low weight and super-smooth aerodynamics mean that both the Coupe and Convertible models are capable of 186 mph and can accelerate to 62 mph in just 4.3 seconds with the manual and 4.4 seconds with the auto paddle-shift transmission.

A cutting-edge hydroformed steel backbone chassis, a lightweight composite body and 51/49% front/rear weight distribution ensure optimum balance for an exceptional driving experience. Meanwhile, the luxuriously appointed cockpit features dual zone climate control, a programmable Driver Information Centre and a seven-speaker audio system.

Uprated V8 engine for 2008

For 2008, the Corvette C6 is powered by an uprated version of the famous small-block V8, with a 200 cc hike in capacity to 6.2 litres. The LS3 engine delivers peak output levels of 437 ps at 5900 rpm – up 9.2% – and 575 Nm of torque at 4600 rpm – up 5.3% over last year’s model. The 2008 Corvette transmits power to the rear axle through a short-throw six-speed manual transmission or an optional six-speed Paddle Shift automatic transmission.

Three-mode Paddle Shift automatic

Drivers opting for the automatic six-speed transmission have a choice of three modes: Drive, Sport, and Paddle Shift. The fully-automatic Drive mode uses predetermined shift points and is optimised for smooth gear changes. Sport mode features Performance Algorithm Shifting (PAS), which modifies gear change patterns during spirited driving holding each gear to a higher rpm, and delivering quicker shifts, for even better performance. In Paddle Shift mode, sequential gear changes are controlled by the driver manually, using paddles behind the steering wheel.

This six-speed close-ratio transmission has smaller ‘steps’ between the gears, which enhances the feeling of seamlessly surging performance and smoothness. A lower first gear ratio provides exceptional ‘launch’ from standstill, while a high top gear ratio enables the automatic Corvette to cruise quickly, quietly and economically with extra-urban fuel economy figures exceeding 30 mpg.

Fitted with the automatic transmission, the Corvette is capable of reaching a top speed of 186 mph and accelerating from zero to 60 mph in just 4.4 seconds.

Short-throw, six-speed manual

In standard guise, the Corvette C6 is equipped with a Tremec T56 six-speed manual transmission, which is pre-configured with the more aggressive gearing of the Z51 Performance Package for improved acceleration. This gearbox features a sharp, precise short-throw mechanism that minimises movements of the selector lever.

When specified with the Magnetic Selective Ride Control suspension option (£1700), the Corvette C6 will also have slightly ‘softer’ gearing with different ratios for the manual transmission.

Enhanced chassis and suspension

The Corvette chassis design features a low-weight hydroformed steel rail backbone structure, cored composite floors, an enclosed centre tunnel, rear-mounted transmission and aluminium cockpit structure.

The proven and trademark short-long arm (double-wishbone) and transverse composite leaf spring independent suspension configuration (front and rear) delivers a sure-footed, compliant ride and sharp, direct handling with excellent traction and stability in corners.

The C6 features a long wheelbase (2686 mm), wide track (1577 mm front and 1542 mm rear), and a front-mounted engine, rear transaxle configuration. These features help to achieve an ‘ideally balanced’ 51/49% front/rear weight distribution, and are all excellent ingredients for a car with agile, responsive handling.

Three dynamic chassis control systems – Active Handling (ESP), Traction Control and ABS anti-lock braking – operate together to provide a strong, but unobtrusive safety net at all times, even during high-performance driving.

As befits a high performance supercar, the C6 features a powerful braking system. Impressive stopping power is delivered through the front 340 mm brakes, which feature six-piston calipers, and the rear 330 mm discs using four-piston calipers.

The optional Magnetic Selective Ride Control suspension (£1700) features fast-reacting magneto-rheological shock absorbers that automatically adjust their damping rates, almost instantaneously, in response to changing terrain and road surfaces. Two suspension choices – ‘Tour’ and ‘Sport’ – allow drivers to choose the set-up that best suits their mood and driving style every day. Customers choosing this option also benefit from upgraded cross-drilled brakes.

As standard, the C6 sits on 18-inch front and 19-inch rear, five split spoke aluminium silver alloy wheels, with 245/40 ZR18 and 285/35 ZR19 tyres. As an option, similarly sized, five-spoke polished aluminium wheels are available. Both wheel types are fitted with Goodyear Extended Mobility Tyres that exploit the latest tyre sidewall design and compound technology to deliver the safety benefits of run-flat technology.

Taut purposeful iconic styling

As befits its status and an all-American automotive icon, the 2008 C6 retains the unmistakably distinctive design cues of the modern Corvette, subtly incorporating recent refinements. For example, the exposed front headlamps feature Xenon HID technology. The clean, undisturbed exterior lines are helped by the exclusion of mechanical door handles in favour of keyless electronic access and the integration of the radio antenna into the windscreen glass. Yielding an ultra-low drag coefficient of just 0.28 Cd, C6’s excellent aerodynamics incorporate anti-lift characteristics for enhanced high-speed stability.

The sharply defined front wings and a short front overhang contribute to a taut, purposeful front-end design. Meanwhile bold, simple rear-end styling emphasises the short rear overhang. The four round tail lamps – a Corvette trademark – are complimented by the four circular exhaust tailpipes integrated into the rear diffuser.

Both the Coupe and Convertible are available in a choice of eight exterior colours, with six interior colours – Red, Ebony, Cashmere, Titanium Grey, Sienna and Linen – depending on model.

Luxurious interior comfort and advanced technologies

The Corvette hallmark dual cockpit interior design features high quality craftsmanship and functionality. The two-layer composite driver and passenger seats give outstanding support and feature six-way power adjustment. Standard equipment includes climate control air-conditioning, cruise control and power programmable door locks.

The C6 features keyless access and push button start technologies, which allow entry and ignition by detecting the proximity of the key fob. The standard audio system includes RDS AM/FM radio, CD player, MP3 playback capability and seven speakers, with steering-wheel mounted controls.

As an option, a DVD-navigation system is available priced at £1600, while a six-disc in-dash CD changer and Premium Bose® seven-speaker system is included with the £2400 Luxury Pack, which is optional for the C6 Coupe and standard on the C6 Convertible.

In full, the Luxury Pack includes:

  • Memory package with presets for two drivers for the six-way power driver seat, outside mirrors and telescoping steering wheel
  • Power telescopic steering wheel with manual tilt
  • Heated seats
  • Head-Up Display including G-force meter
  • Premium Bose® 7-speaker system
  • 6-disc in-dash CD changer
  • Auto dimming inside rear-view mirror with compass and driver outside mirror

A highlight of the Luxury Pack is the menu-selectable head-up display (HUD) – projected on to the windscreen – which enhances safety by allowing drivers to focus on the road while still monitoring vehicle speed and other critical information. The two settings, ‘Street’ and ‘Track’, are each pre-programmed to display information relevant for each respective situation.

Fresh-air motoring with Coupe or Convertible

Both 2008 Corvette C6 models offer drivers and passengers the opportunity to enjoy fresh-air motoring. The C6 Coupe features a removable body-colour roof panel, which can be stowed under the hatchback in the luggage area. A removable tinted clear roof panel is available as a £700 option.

The C6 Convertible’s power-operated soft top can be raised or lowered in just 18 seconds. The five-layer fabric soft top – available in black, beige and grey – preserves the car’s excellent aerodynamics and minimises noise intrusion.

The C6 Convertible offers identical performance, refinement and equipment levels to the Coupe. As the Corvette’s structure was designed from the outset to be an open car, it has similar torsional and flexural rigidity and ensures there is no compromise in ride, handling or performance compared with the Coupe.

Rear visibility in the Convertible is improved with a heated glass rear windscreen.

Active and Passive safety as standard

Both Corvette C6 models incorporate advanced active and passive safety features. With its agile handling, HUD, good visibility and immensely powerful all-disc braking system the C6 is comprehensively equipped to enable drivers to avoid the everyday hazards of motoring.

However, if an accident is unavoidable, the C6 has an Automatic Occupant Sensing System which ensures that the vehicle’s numerous safety systems deploy in the most appropriate manner for a particular incident. These systems include front dual-stage and side-impact airbags for both driver and passenger.

A Tyre Pressure Monitoring System, Oil Life Monitoring System and Battery Rundown System ensure the driver is kept informed of the status of key vehicle components, pre-empting the development of any serious problems.

Range-topping Corvette Z06 Coupe

Drivers in search of the extreme Corvette experience, can upgraded their dreams to enjoy the race-developed power, performance and advanced technologies of the most powerful Corvette available in Europe – the Z06 Coupe.

Developed alongside the Le Mans GT1 class-winning Corvette C6.R race car, the Z06 benefits directly from an extensive transfer of motorsport technologies and advanced materials, plus the fitting of a larger capacity 7-litre, 512 ps V8 engine, to deliver blistering performance. The 2008 model Z06 Coupe is available in the UK from £61,995.